466. Welcome to the street!
© Bruce Goodman 19 January 2015

The Lovelady family had lived on the street since the street was made. That must have been about fifteen years ago. Families came and went, but it seemed the Lovelady’s were part of the very fabric of the street. I suppose there were about thirty houses altogether. That made thirty families.

The Lovelady’s were very community minded. Mrs Lovelady (let’s call her Frances-Maud because that was her name) always made it her business to visit any new family that came into the street. She would take along a basket of freshly baked goodies, and knock on the door.

“Welcome to the street!” she would say. She wasn’t the slightest bit gossipy, but everyone was grateful for her kindness. She could answer questions too that new house owners always wanted to know; such as what day of the week did the trash collecting vehicle come?

It would be too much to say that Frances-Maud was a bit of an institution. But she was, in a way! And Mr Lovelady, he was equally sociable. Even though he left reasonably early for his work as a heart surgeon and came back reasonably late, he somehow managed to know all the people on the street, and the names of all their kids. On Saturdays he coached the local boys’ football team. Once though, he went to hospital for a hernia operation and was away for three days. All the kids in the street put up a huge banner that said WELCOME HOME, MISTER LOVELADY!

Anyway, a new family had arrived, just before Christmas, at Number 22. Frances-Maud baked a lovely batch of things, decorated a basket with little sprigs of Christmas, and knocked on the door of Number 22.

“Piss off!” came a voice from inside. “We don’t let niggers into the house.”

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